Critically acclaimed and often controversial director Oliver Stone returns with the eagerly awaited film ‘W’, a biopic on former U.S President George W. Bush. Stone visits Hong Kong and tells ‘Talk Asia’ host Anjali Rao what he thinks of the former President Bush, the new President Barack Obama, the war on terror and the current economic crisis.
From warzones to Wall Street, Stone’s movies are often based on much debated political and cultural topics. ‘W’ is of course no exception. Stone explains to Rao why George W. Bush is such a compelling figure, even now that he’s out of office: “Bush is a figure that my daughter and grand-daughter will be talking about in 2040. His policy is here. He’s not gone. His war on terror. That’s a big one, we got it still.”
Stone also speaks about the current President Barack Obama: “I’m rooting for him. I voted for him,” said Oliver Stone. But he isn’t completely taken by President Obama: “Obama’s been operating under his illusion that he can be friends with everybody…use your power when you got it.” adding later, “He’s going out and being on talk shows. That’s ridiculous. He’s got to stick to his guns.”
Stone talks about one of his other controversial movies ‘JFK’ and says he never expected the half-truth-half-fiction movie would ignite such a huge backlash: “I thought I would be appreciated for having trying to unearth this huge hypocrisy…I was sandbagged! Obviously there is ellipsis, but I’ll go head to head with anybody on what’s in that movie.”
The 62-year-old director also opens up to Rao about a more personal topic, recreational drug use: “I grew up in a time when drugs were a very liberating experience in the 60s. I never had drugs before and all of a sudden, I’m on acid and I’m doing pot. I have to say drugs hurt me and help me. It kept me balanced and it kept me inquisitive…I try to get away inside the so-called laws which I find ridiculous.”